18 Books You Should Read By the Time You Turn 18

By Mackenzie Patel

WANT Esteemed Contributor

Since I am turning eighteen in less than a month, I got to thinking about specific books I think most eighteen year olds should have read thus far. Whether they are assigned school readings, books read for pleasure, or titles you plucked off the shelf randomly at the local library, the books listed below are definitely “must reads” for any educated young adult. The plots are intricate, the characters are inspiring and deep, and the elegant prose practically has me salivating with literary lust. Although I tend to read mostly classic books, I did include some current YA fiction (sorry, John Green novels and Hunger Games didn’t make the cut). These selections are memorable, timeless, and have the ability to transport even the most unimaginative reader into another realm of reality.

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (watch out for Go Set A Watchman coming out on July 14th!)
  2. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
  3. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. Read my article about the HP and LOTR series on Huffington Post here.
  4. Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
  5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott. Fitzgerald
  6. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  7. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
  8. Julius Caesar by Shakespeare
  9. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  10. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
  11. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen
  12. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares
  13. Freakonomics by Stephen J. Dubner, Steven D. Levitt
  14. Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  15. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglass Adams
  16. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
  17. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  18. Bridge to Terebithia by Katherine Paterson

What books do you think should be on the list? Leave in the comments below! Check out my Goodreads profile here.

Read more by Mackenzie here.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

About Grace Masback

Grace Masback, 17, aspires to give voice to the voiceless and holds the modest ambition of becoming the voice of Gen Z. Frustrated by the dearth of impactful platforms for teen journalists, she founded WANT, a news, sports, and entertainment website that aggregates the best in high school journalism from school newspapers and teen bloggers around the world (www.wantnewsforteens.com).

There are 2 comments

  1. Lindsay Price

    Very nice list here. I have read a bunch of those and many would make my list too.
    I would also recommend the Doomsday Kids series by Karyn Folan. (http://thedoomsdaykids.com/wp/).
    Probably the best YA fiction I have read. I strongly suggest checking out some of the reviews and authors website for these books. They really are quite outstanding and new installments are being published frequently. The 5th in the series is coming this July and I can’t wait.

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